I have traced the patterns on this quilt and the stitching is very neatly and precisely done - the work of a professional quilter. The patterns include wonderful church windows, fans, spirals, twists and a central medallion. the colours are a bright royal blue and a bright red.
A very heavy quilt. It was made about 1880 in the Swansea valleys, probably near Aberdare where a great many quilters lived.
This flannel cloth was formerly a common product of many Welsh mills, but is now, to my knowledge, made only at one factory - the Welsh Wool Museum, the former Cambrian Mills in the village of Dre-fach, Felindre in the Teifi Valley. A part of the Museum of Wales, the mill demonstrates the process from "fleece to fabric".
In 2007, the remote location led to the Museum having the dubious distinction of being Britain's least popular attraction with just over 17,000 visitors. I have not visited and am certainly looking forward to my visit!
You may have seen DeAnne Hartwell's quilts at the Festival of Quilts last summer. DeAnne, who lives near Cardiff,uses woollen fabrics sourced from the Museum in many of her quilts. Jen Jones also buy the fabrics to send to Ethiopia where it is used to make modern flannel quilts in the Welsh style.
A beautiful quilt - it was exhibited at the Quilt Associations summer exhibition in the Minerva Centre in 2009.